Zero draft of the Rio+20 outcome document
The 20-page long document consists of 128 paragraphs and is divided into five sections: vision, renewing political commitment, green economy institutional framework and framework for action. The full document is available at the Rio+20 website.
The document refreshes some old, already raised in the past themes related to sustainable development and mixes it with new elements. New are policy framework for corporate reporting and strong emphasis on citizen participation.
In terms of green economy for sustainable development, the document raises issues such as creation of national and sector strategies, development of knowledge platforms, toolkits, indicators, building capacity development mechanisms, and designing of a roadmap for greening the economy.
In terms of Institutional Framework for Sustainable Development, zero draft proposes creation of Sustainable Development Council with incorporated voluntary reviewing process as well as upgrading UNEP.
Section of the document concerning putting Green Economy into practice calls for creation of Sustainable Development Goals and indicators that will go ‘beyond GDP’. Other action points include rights based approach to basic needs, supporting access to Information Technologies, reform of the harmful subsidies and adequate protection of vulnerable groups, solutions for sustainable energy, social protection and creation of the Ombudsman for future generations.
According to Chantal Line Carpentier, Coordinator for Major Groups at the Rio+10 Secretariat, directly involved in the process of writing the zero draft, the text needs to be further refined, however its main structure will probably stay the same. Major changes such as removing or adding paragraph would also require much effort of many actors. However, suggestions on more detailed refinements are welcomed. Civil society groups and other actors are encouraged to post submissions that can help to strengthen, precise and add to what is already there. Everybody can contribute with their ideas by uploading position papers or texts/sentences for the outcome document to the UNSD12 website.
The Rio+20 outcome document receives much attention. However, it is important to remember that it will not be the only one output of the conference. Rio+20 is likely to result in many new initiatives related to sustainable development. Possible outcomes are: governing mechanism for marine biodiversity, global observation network on ocean acidification, 10-year Framework of Programmes on Sustainable Consumption and Production and report on the state of the planet’s carrying capacity.
Text: Marta Dabrowska